The student government at the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point refused to formally recognize a conservative student group on the basis that the group is “unsafe.”
A group of students looking to establish a Turning Point USA chapter at the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point were denied after a vote by the school’s student government.
Before the student government voted on whether or not to recognize the club, they interrogated members on their political perspectives. One senator took specific issue with Turning Point’s “Victims of Communism” project. “Why exactly is it titled Victims of Communism? That seems negative towards communism,” the senator asked.
According to the MacIver Institute, a representative from the school’s College of Letters and Science argued that recognizing the club would harm the campus’ “ diverse and inclusive environment.”
“Allowing this org will cause students to feel unsafe and unwelcome and now [sic] want to attend this university at all,” the institute reported,” the representative continued.
“We have senators that are elected by each college, and the senators represent their constituents the students that are part of the colleges they represent,” Tegan Griffith, the communications director for the University of Wisconsin at student government, told a local news outlet. “It was discussed at length, and both the student organization and the student population were given ample time to discuss their thoughts and feelings.”
The group was ultimately approved after Vice Chancellor Al Thompson was forced to intervene. Thompson said that the school “values diversity and the freedom to explore all ideas, even unpopular ones” in a statement to The College Fix. Thompson referred to an incident a “learning experience” for the student government before adding that “UW-Stevens Point remains committed to a learning environment that respects multiple viewpoints and ensures discourse is civil and our campus is safe for all.”